Thursday, May 05, 2011

Art, snails & a (soon-to-be) graduate

i finally have a chance to post a few photos of the first canvas i made in my She Art class with Christy Tomlinson.  i'm not sure how i found her blog/website, but after i saw her cute and fun canvases, i just knew i HAD to take a class with her.

she's also teaching a journaling class called "She Had Three Hearts" and there is still time to register.  i learned SO MUCH in the She Art class, i am still trying to digest it all.  i'm not quite done with my first canvas, just have to finish up painting the sides and i'm done.

i learned a lot about layering paper, paint, stamps, ink, stencils and (my new favorite) RUB-ONS!!  who knew that this product could lend SO MUCH extra fun and texture to the background??  they're like stamps, but the images are always darker and a little more clear.  and they are fun to just put on partially to give it a distressed or worn look.

if you ever decide to take a class with christy, you WON'T be disappointed!!  i love her style, i love how she's not afraid to just put down the layers of beautiful paper and paint and stamps and things.    if you're like me, first you will gasp in horror as she cuts through the middle of a gorgeous piece of patterned paper, cutting away until it's just the tiniest little piece she needs!  if i've learned anything from this class, it's not to be afraid to just USE your good stuff and don't look back! :)

we have been enjoying some MARVELOUS spring weather these past few days.  me and the girls have been spending almost ALL DAY outside.  either on a blanket in the front yard, at the park with friends or, our new favorite spot: underneath the shady trees on the san jose state campus right near a little fountain where the girls can run and play.  (photos of that scene coming soon!)

and the front yard is just as nice to go hunting for snails or riding on little scooters.  sureya's new "photo face" is the one above.  it's closed eyes and (usually) a turned head!  she's making a statement pretty early on.  "no photos, please."  well, i guess i'll have to go the candid route for now!

and there she goes, not afraid of anything in the whole wide world (which frightens me to death, of course!)  but i know her lack of fear will get her far in life.  with many cuts and bruises, but with smiles and stories to tell!

and speaking of kids on their way, my stepson zach is turning 18 AND graduating this month!  wow.  i first met him when he was 6 years old.  he was a little shy and still a little mad about his mom and dad's divorce (he was almost 5 when they divorced.  i met his dad about year and a half later) but he was always very loving and full of spunk (in other words, sometimes he could be a little contrarian--always finding a way to argue his side! i used to joke that you could say the sky is blue and he'd find a way to prove you wrong.)

well, with graduation comes senior photos, announcements and invitations.  i wanted to take some photos of him for the announcements so we did a little impromptu photo session in the front yard.  even the cat decided to get into the picture.  which was kind of nice, because it lightened the mood a little.  if it's one thing zach doesn't like, it's having his picture taken!

so i tried to make a little small talk while i took photos.  he's used to me just snapping away.  he knows he doesn't have to pretend to like it or to smile if he doesn't feel like it.  i've been taking photos of him with and without his permission for years!  and i've gotten the most candid photos of him as a result.  i like the one above.  it shows a little bit of uncertainty, a little bit of worry (he's had worry in his eyes since i first met him as a little 6-year-old boy.  if anything, i think he has an old soul) and a lot of thought.

this is the closest i think i got to a smile.  i like it.  i know he's not sure of what's to come in the future, of where he's going to go to school or what he wants to do with his life.  at this point, we're just encouraging him to do what he loves the most.  a lot of people are surprised when we say he's not going to school right away.  (i think they're more surprised that we're not forcing him to!)  and i think, you know, if you're not ready for something or 100% about something and your heart's not in it, you're not going to succeed or have a good time.  he will know when it's time to go to school and maybe it will take him a little while longer to find what brings him joy.  that's all i want as a parent.  to have my kids be joyful and full of love for life.  and we'll help him along the way.  he'll start working this fall and maybe he'll realize he doesn't want to make minimum wage for the rest of his life and he'd like a higher education to pursue loftier goals.  or he might like the idea of having minimal responsibilities and possessions.  there are many roads to take in life, plenty of chances for learning and re-working goals as you go.  i can't wait to see what he chooses and you bet i'll be cheering him on along the way.


  1. Love your canvas-so interesting, there is something new at every glance! It looks like a fun class.
    You asked me where could buy my journals. From my website :
    But I also take orders. Download my May PDF here:
    It has more information.
    And see my store page to download an order form.
    If you have any questions just email me! Thanks!

  2. Love your She Art piece! Oh I could just get lost in those layers of paint and goodness. Love your rainboots and use of color. I so want to take one of these classes!!! Lucky girl! :)



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